Imagine a stadium sound in your local pub, that is what Sunset Sons brought to one of Newcastle’s newest (and oldest) venues.
The year is 1929, The Palace of the Arts in Newcastle’s Exhibition Park is built for the North East Exhibition, over 100 years later it is home to Wylam Brewery’s eight hundred capacity music hall. It takes a band of exceptionally high calibre to walk out into this unique venue and make it feel like Wembley and a hometown pub show all at once, to a band like Sunset Sons this is the perfect stage.
Take four guys from across the UK and Australia, throw them into a bar in Europe’s surf capital and there you have Sunset Sons. A band born in a bar who are destined for the biggest stages in the world, festivals; arenas; bars – their quality shines through every performance, a quality which most musicians spend their whole careers perfecting. Their sound is an effortless blend of that laidback indie attitude mixed with massive stadium sounds creating a band who you could take from an audience of 80 to 8000 and see the same level of passion in both shows.
After mellowing the room down to Prince’s classic ‘Purple Rain’ these four guys walk on stage in drummer Jed Laidlaw’s hometown of Newcastle and tear straight into ‘Medicine’, a crowd favourite from their 2015 EP ‘The Fall Line’. Not one person is standing still, even those who don’t know the words can’t help but smile and bounce along as lead singer Rory Williams’ sheer passion and energy radiates from the stage.
Moving through a range of songs from their debut album ‘Very Rarely Say Die’ the crowd are dancing one moment and swaying the next as Williams guides them from songs like ‘She Wants’ which is the perfect sing-a-long anthem to ‘I Can’t Wait’ which has the crowd in a state of awe which can only be commanded by an audience full of respect for artists who are truly mastering their trade. A cover of Ben E King’s ‘Stand by Me’ had the crowd swaying; singing; and smiling – they had taken a classic and made if theirs.
They may not have the years behind them that the likes of Kings of Leon have, but they are one band who do not seem to have any limits. A mere three years from forming they have found a unique sound, a humble yet powerful presence and a following which will undoubtedly stay with them for years to come. This band is destined for even greater things than they have already achieved, their performance in an 800 capacity brewery would have been just as captivating on the main stage at any festival.
Debut Album ‘Very Rarely Say Die’ is out now via French Exit.